We talk to The Fruit People

by
Joe Griffin
December 21, 2020
The Fruit People using the AutoEntry App

The Fruit People is a fresh fruit business that delivers produce to clients across Dublin. In their nascent stage, they adapted AutoEntry to help with their data entry. 

Initially this helped them free up time and run a more efficient business. But as they grew, so did the benefits of using AutoEntry: Clients adapted the tech too, making every step of their business smoother, faster and more accurate.

Here’s how it happened...


The Company

The Fruit People are a classic example of a win-win business. They deliver fruit  around Dublin, bringing sweetness, nourishment and colour wherever they go. 

Everyone along the chain benefits; the farmer whose produce is sold directly to the Fruit People; the businesses whose employees are happier and healthier; and of course, the employees themselves, who get to gorge on a rich variety of flavours, both familiar and exotic. 

As one of The Fruit People’s customers, AutoEntry can testify to the tastiness, freshness and (in cases where they recommend new fruits to us) the weirdness of their produce.

The First Seeds - How the Fruit People got Started 

A classic start-up, the Fruit People started in their grandfather’s garden shed in 2013 after returning from Australia where the idea was born. 

The initial team was made up of brothers Barry and Brian Dennis. Since then the business has grown to 30+ staff. They moved from that shed to a rental property, and have now moved into their own premises that’s four times bigger than the space they had before. In an irresistible metaphor, the company has sprouted and flourished in today’s challenging climate.

The Fruit People culture is centred around quality, principally of product and service. The produce is sourced directly from farmers, where at all possible, and that means that the fruit is not sitting in a warehouse waiting for distribution. The shortened journey between farmer and that basket in your office or kitchen means that the fruit is at optimal freshness. 

The Fruit People team are often on first name terms with their customers and will introduce lesser known (in season) fruits that they discover in the markets.

 It’s little wonder that staff, like Clare Cramer who’s been there from year two, tell us that she “absolutely loves [her] job”. 

‍Implementation - how Fruit People “peared” with AutoEntry 

The Fruit People tried AutoEntry after it was recommended to them by their accountant. Co-founder Barry Dennis loves tech and was happy to trial it.

 Clare Cramer (Head of Accounts and aforementioned enthusiastic employee) trialled the software by uploading some of their own financial documents: “I snapped a few receipts and uploaded a few invoices. Everything read perfectly and I was able to publish them into Xero immediately”.

Clare stresses that setup is key and that automation is important for businesses to scale: “We implemented AutoEntry when the business was a lot smaller. Even back then, data entry was taking time, looking at the volume now I would hate to think how much time it would take to process all of that.”

“Branching” out: Introducing Suppliers to AutoEntry

The Fruit People quickly realised that even more time can be saved if they ask their suppliers to email their invoices directly into AutoEntry. This can be done via a custom AutoEntry email address. 

“We were getting invoices from suppliers in the traditional paper format,” says Barry Denis, Co-Founder & CEO. “The number of invoices was increasing considerably and so I asked our suppliers to email their invoices into AutoEntry directly. This saved us even more time. Now I don’t even have to upload the invoices into AutoEntry: they are already in there. Now all I have to do is reconcile them and then publish into Xero”.

Reaping Benefits

By automating data entry, AutoEntry gives small and medium business real, tangible benefits. Here are just a few...

1.      The gift of time

“Time savings is obviously one of the benefits to using AutoEntry!” Clare Cramer, operations manager. “I wouldn’t like to think how much time I would have spent on data entry if we hadn’t implemented AutoEntry.”

2.      Accuracy

“Providing the document is clear enough to be read properly, the number of mistakes becomes negligible. Once the documents are uploaded into AutoEntry all I have to do is reconcile the entries; there’s very little in terms of inaccuracies that can happen after that.”

“Another area that AutoEntry helps with is duplicate invoices. Anyone doing manual data entry will have come across duplicate invoices. You can’t have duplicate invoices in AutoEntry!”

3.      Kinder to the environment

“We would like to be as paperless as possible. We are working with fresh fruit every day and so we are very aware of the health of the environment. We also like that the data is captured and stored safely so that we can destroy these important documents with the peace of mind that the data will always be available to us and that we can always print off whatever we need...if we need it."


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